Report cites lax security at Washington psychiatric hospital after violent patients escape

An investigation by AP reporter Martha Bellisle revealed that corrections officials found evidence of multiple security failures during an investigation of Washington’s largest psychiatric hospital in April. The investigation followed the escape of two violent patients through a broken window that other patients had complained about “for quite some time.” Investigators found that there were…

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Texas keeps tens of thousands of children out of special education

Texas public schools are keeping tens of thousands of disabled children out of special education according to an investigation by the Houston Chronicle. Over a decade ago, state officials decided that only 8.5 percent of students (less than the national average of 13 percent) should receive special education services, even though one official admitted that…

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Why does Minnesota have so many American Indian children in foster care?

Minnesota has more American Indian children in foster care than any other state, including those with significantly larger Indian populations, according to a Star Tribune analysis of federal and state data. Less than 2 percent of children in Minnesota are Indian, but they make up nearly a quarter of the state’s foster care population —…

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North Carolina falls behind on efforts to reform mental health treatment

Halfway through its effort to reform mental health treatment for those stuck in adult care homes, North Carolina is struggling to achieve goals detailed in a civil rights settlement with the federal government, according to a report by WRAL. As of July 1, North Carolina should have 1,166 people out of adult care facilities and…

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Texas’ Child Protective Services leaves many endangered children unseen on a day-to-day basis

According to data analyzed by The Dallas Morning News, on any given day over the past two months, there were more than 3,400 children on the Child Protective Services radar that weren’t seen once by a caseworker in Texas. On an average day in Texas, about 700 children classified as extreme cases will go unseen.…

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Mentally ill abused, neglected inside Minnesota treatment center

KSTP investigated dangerous conditions at Minnesota’s largest mental health hospital, which is currently understaffed, under a federal review, and being threatened with a loss of funding, unless conditions improve. Through interviews with current and former employees, and a review of state records, KSTP exposed a pattern of abuse and neglect, and a state government lacking…

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Video shows sheriff discussing abusive discipline at boarding school

Before he was a tough-talking Arizona sheriff and congressional candidate, Paul Babeu ran a Massachusetts boarding school rife with abuse. The DeSisto school used inhumane punishments on teens with special needs. After a 2012 ABC15 investigation, Babeu denied any “knowledge” of the mistreatment of students. But a never-before-seen home video proves that Babeu not only…

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Indiana’s adult protective services program leaves vulnerable adults exposed to exploitation, abuse, neglect

An investigation by the Indianapolis Star found that the state agency responsible for protecting vulnerable adults has exposed thousands to abuse and neglect as a result of overwhelmed investigators.  The paper used public records requests to compare Indiana’s Adult Protective Services with similar agencies across the country. Among their findings: Indiana has up to 20…

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Newborns die after being sent home with mothers struggling to kick drug addictions

Reuters identified 110 babies who died since 2010 after being born exposed to opioid drugs and sent home to parents who were ill-equipped to take care of them. More than half of those babies had to go through drug withdrawal before they were released, only to die under preventable circumstances.  The investigation features interviews with…

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How Minnesota is failing thousands of adults living with disabilities

The Star Tribune’s five-day report, “A matter of dignity,” outlines how Minnesota marginalizes adults with disabilities. The series describes how the state is segregating disabled adults, partly through sheltered workshops that place these adults in jobs that pay little and leave no room for growth. Many of these disabled adults live in Minnesota group homes and more…

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